Are you considering getting an outdoor TV this year? It’s great to have entertainment outdoors. But before you focus on the movies you want to watch, or the type beverage you’ll be sipping by the pool as the game is playing on the TV, consider seven key items. They will help you determine whether and how you want to proceed with an outdoor TV:
1) Location is Important
Really think about where you want to watch TV. On the deck? The patio? By the pool? Multiple locations? Will you be close to the house? Far away?
2) Be Sure Infrastructure is in Place
Do you have the right infrastructure to support successful TV watching outdoors? If not then this needs to be set up first.
- Electrical needs to be available
- If you want to watch cable services then a coax cable needs to be connected to the cable box and the TV
- If you want streaming services then good wifi is needed, or a network cable needs to be run to the TV.
3) When & Where Are You Watching Outdoor TV?
Will you be doing most of your TV watching in sun or shade? During the daytime, or at night? Consider these factors before you make an expenditure.
Outdoor TVs are brighter than indoor TVs. But there are also differences among outdoor TVs. Choose a TV based on when and where you’re likely to be watching, and its rating for brightness. Outdoor TVs are also rated for weather extremes. Whenever possible, place TVs under an overhang or within a covered area to reduce weather impact.
4) Size Matters
You don’t want to make a substantial purchase of an outdoor TV and then discover that the screen is too small and not immersive enough. On the other hand, you don’t want it to be too big and have the picture overwhelm you and your guests. Consider how far away from the screen you’ll be sitting. Is the TV for background entertainment, or the central experience? Weigh all this against what your budget can support.
5) Indoor TVs Are Not Built for Outdoors
Outdoor TVs are designed to provide substantial weather resistance. They’ve been solidly constructed and sealed in order to battle and withstand elements like humidity, freezing temperatures, heat, wind, dust, and bugs.
An indoor TV isn’t designed for this type of constant combat. It’s more fragile, and insects, dust, and moisture can get in more easily. The picture is not as bright as it is on an outdoor TV, and the audio will be harder to hear.
For very occasional use you could try the low-cost alternative of putting an indoor TV on a cart, and then moving it in and out of the house as needed. But remember: the TV experience will not be fully satisfactory because of the dim quality of the screen. You also need to make sure that the TV comes back inside after use because otherwise it will be damaged by weather.
One option to consider is putting an indoor TV inside a weather-proof enclosure that’s designed for TVs. However the enclosure costs approximately $1500 for a 42 – 50″ TV, which is about the same as for an outdoor TV. Potential cost savings may come later when a replacement TV is needed since indoor TVs are significantly cheaper than outdoor TVs.
6) Outdoor TVs Are Not Cheap
Adding an outdoor TV to your life will cost you. A 42″ outdoor TV is approximately $1500. A 55 – 60″ TV rated for use in the shade can range from $2500 – $4000. An outdoor TV rated for sun can cost substantially more. Add to this installation, plus any electrical or wifi work that may be needed. Some of the best outdoor TV brands to consider are Sunbright, Samsung, and Furion.
Figure on TV life of about 5 – 7 years, depending upon exposure, whether the TV is covered in winter, etc.
7) And They May Not Be Smart
You’d assume that these outdoor TVs would all have built in smart features. Don’t assume. Check the feature set for any specific TV. If smart capability is not included then Roku, an Amazon Firestick, or Apple TV can be added to provide streaming services.
Thinking of outdoor TV? Talk to us! Bergen IT can help you with equipment recommendations, installation, and configuration.
Contact us now.
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